(an actual visit.)
On the north, lateral shore on the Hawaiian island of Molokai, there lies a peninsula that juts out into the turbulent waves of that ocean they call “Pacific.”
The above photo shows what it looks like from about 3,500 feet. I took this photo when we lived there. It’s THAT far down to the lava rocks that rim the ocean below. It’s a straight drop, all the way down, having been formed this way, thousands of years ago by one of the violent volcanic up thrusts which formed the eight islands in the Hawaiian chain. There’s no fence there, so all photographers take careful note of the local caution warning: “Don’t get too close to the edge.”
On the extreme left (near the peninsula tip), you can see the runway – which is one method of access – the other being the mule trail down the almost vertical cliff behind the photographer. The runway itself is built on lava rocks. On final approach, we cut through high splashing waves which soaked the aircraft, and landed on a roller coaster runway and then taxied through the soggy grass to the flight hut, toward the right side of the photo. The town of Kalaupapa itself is on the coast at the lower front right.
Kalaupapa is a leper colony . . . . in fact, the only one in the U.S.
The picture to the right lower is of the first preacher/ organizer on Kalaupapa around the mid 1860’s. His official name was Father Joseph Damien de Veutes, and he was a Belgian priest. He became known in the islands as simply “Father Damien.” And he died in 1889 from the leprosy disease itself.
The admin address is:
Box 2222 KPHI 96742
In 1865, they started to remove about 6000 people diagnosed with leprosy to Kalaupapa, as isolation was the only means of protection in those days. But there was no one there responsible to organize things, and so, there was chaos. It was survival of the toughest and fittest. There were beatings, thievery, rapings, and all sorts of brutality, until Damien arrived from the Big Island (Hawaii) in the early 1870’s. He managed to calm things, as the state government (and religious organizations) had done little (or nothing) to help. Bodies of newcomers were smashed on the sharp, jagged, windward lava rocks when they arrived, and patients were stripped of their clothes and personal belongings on arrival by the colony bullies. Damien managed to stop all that.
Now the Catholic Church apparently wants to “canonize Damien – having already dug –up and stolen his body from its church side grave on Kalaupapa. The people there, in the colony, have asked Rome to have his body returned for reburial at its original site, next to the church. But Rome gave a flat “NO”. Instead, they cut off the left hand of their Belgian martyr wrapped it up somehow, and sent it back to the folks in Kalaupapa, with instructions to “ Hey lepers, you won’t get the body. Go bury this instead.” After all, the almighty Catholic Church did NOT want to lose the entire body of a future saint. Just think of all the money they could “garner” from the many bone relics of Damien’s de-composing corpse. Decomposing, of course, in Belgium, and not in Kalaupapa.
During my whole time in Hawaii, I never knew of any other minister visiting those people in Kalaupapa. The cultmasters and hirelings of WCG were naturally too busy crossing continents in their plush jets, dining sumptuously at top restaurants across the globe, and giving Stupid Crystal to corrupt world leaders, so they were too busy to bestow any time at all to those( non-profitable), contagious” lepers in simple need of some friendly company. I offered to fly other “ministers” in there, to visit – but a firm “NO.” came from all of them. And I thot that ALL “ministers” were supposed to serve. Stupid me!
Virtually no churches visit there now, so the leper families are a lonely group. Leprosy is NOT contagious at this time. The use of sulphone drugs has almost eliminated the contagion.
To visit such a place, I learned that one must “Go the extra mile,” and the WCG leadership was NOT prepared to go beyond the best restaurants, fancy homes, and the most exotic night clubs – all at the tithe payer’s expense (of course). So Kalaupapa was ignored by all the “uppers,” even the minister who preceded me. Remember, “God loves quality,” and lepers do not (according to them) qualify to be the “elite.”
Damien built his little church building (St. Philomena’s) on the Eastern (or windward) side of the peninsula. The visit to that place was an eye-opener.
There were the usual pews, but in front of each seating spot, a one foot square hole was cut in the floor. It led straight to the damp ground underneath. It was called the “Spit Hole.” Lepers, when their disease is full, must continually SPIT, because of their constant congestion. Hence the hole. The congregation literally spat their way through the mass. Even Damien (after he’d contracted leprosy), had his own spit-hole next to the pulpit at front. He had cut all the spit holes, built the pews, and even the whole church. Large tea leaves were funneled into each spit-hope, to channel the spittle accurately down the hole. These were collected and cleaned out by Damien himself after the service.
Can we imagine a WCG “minister” doing this?
So much for Kalaupapa and those dear folks who live there. They seem to be ignored by the world, and certainly by “church” (biz) organizations.
Anyhow, I just thot this was part of an actual trip that you could share with me.
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